Where can I find vintage used cars?
Buying vintage used cars can be rewarding and even a good financial investment, but it’s a lot more difficult than purchasing your car new. After all, vintage cars have usually had multiple previous owners and have been through a lot. It can be hard to find one that’s been cared for lovingly and still carries an affordable price tag.
It can be even harder to find a car that you can pick up from the buyer easily, maintain correctly and insure with the kind of coverage it needs. If you look in the right places and take the right precautions, however, you’ll have an easier time finding the right car for your budget and lifestyle.
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Where to Buy
Most people start looking for new or used cars at a dealership, but you’re not likely to find many vintage cars there. The simplest option for many buyers is checking the local classified ads for private sales. While the majority of sales ads for cars are now online, don’t forget to check local print publications. Many vintage car owners are older and more likely to use this medium to advertise their sales.
In addition to buying from the classified ads, you can also look for vintage cars at auctions and collector shows. These vehicles may be more expensive than cars bought through personal sales, but they’re also often in better condition. It’s worth looking, if only to see the range of vehicles you could choose from.
Online options include vintage car clubs, the owners of which often sell and trade vehicles within the club. These places are a wonderful option for meeting other people who are interested in the same vehicles you are. You can also check out enthusiast magazines and journals, which often have sales ads along with helpful articles. Large online sales and auction sites are another option, especially if you want to buy a vehicle long-distance.
Things To Remember
Once you know where you’re going to look for your next vintage used car, it’s a good idea to keep a few things in mind. After all, not every car is going to be right for you. Here’s what you should consider:
- Budget – While less popular models can be quite inexpensive, sought-after vintage cars may quickly exceed your budget. Remember to factor in not just the purchase price of the car, but what you’ll pay in insurance and maintenance. Most vintage cars require more insurance protection and regular car to stay in ideal condition.
- Maintenance – You can reduce the cost of maintaining a vintage car if you do some of the work yourself. In fact, many older cars were originally sold with the assumption that the owner would be able to do some basic maintenance. If you don’t want to pay a mechanic for everything, you’ll have to develop the basic skills and equipment for the job, however. When you’re not confident in your ability to car for the car, make sure you get in touch with a trustworthy mechanic who specializes in your car.
- Transportation – Many vintage cars are sold online, by people who live far away from one another. In private sales, the seller is often willing to drive the car to a mutually-agreed meeting point, but you’ll still need to get there to pick it up. If you’re buying a car long-distance, make sure you know how you’re going to get it, how much transportation will cost and what legal considerations might apply.
- Due Diligence – Before you buy, you should know all about the car. Get the seller to provide you with the VIN, if it’s available, to give you a full history of the vehicle. Even classic cars can be restored after having been in serious accidents, and a car with an unknown history could be full of unpleasant surprises. Make sure that the car has never been stolen, since you could be held accountable if it was.
If the vehicle is local, have it looked at by a trusted mechanic and an appraiser. If you’re buying long-distance, get the seller to provide you with paperwork that verifies its condition and value before you buy. Doing your due diligence helps protect you during the sale and ensures you get a great car for what you pay.
Insuring Your Vintage Used Car
Of course, even the most inexpensive vintage car is no bargain without good car insurance. Most vintage car owners don’t want just the minimal legal requirements; they want to make sure their car is completely protected. For very valuable models, such as vintage BMWs, this can be a costly endeavor. Less popular or valuable vehicles may not be as expensive to insure, but their policies still require a little bit of careful handling.
Once you’ve found the ideal car for you, make sure you get quotes from many different car insurance providers, so you’ll know you’re getting the best deal. Take a few minutes to enter your ZIP code to compare the possible insurance options for your vintage car without ever leaving your desk. You’ll be protected while driving and you’ll know you’re not paying too much. Be sure to check out the FREE comparison tool below to find great auto insurance coverage!